Great Cook Books I Cook (and live) by

  • Big Orange Book by Rachael Ray
  • Giada at Home
  • Jamie at Home
  • Look and Cook by Rachael Ray

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Mini-slider salad

       During the busy holiday season we sometimes forget to eat right. We also tend to eat way more than we should, and most of it pretty heavy. Here is a light, easy recipe to make on those evenings you just want healthy and light, but always tasty!

Mini turkey slider salad:
            4 tablespoons  Olive Oil, divided
            2 pounds ground turkey
            1/2 small red onion, grated
            2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
            1 tablespoon (a palmful) poultry seasoning
            3/4 pound brick sharp cheddar cheese, sliced 1/4-inch thick into small squares
            3 tablespoons yellow mustard
            2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
            2 large hearts romaine lettuce, coarsely chopped
            1 cup sliced pickles, drained and chopped – choose from sweet, half-sour or dill varieties
           1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in half

In a large bowl mix together the turkey, onion, worcestershire sauce and poultry seasoning. using an ice cream scoop, scoop out the meat. Roll into balls, and make a well in the middle of each ball and stuff each one with a cube of cheese. Make sure you roll the meat over the cheese so you can't see any of the cheese. Now, press gently to form a patties.

 Place a large skillet over medium-high heat with 2 turns of the pan of olive oil, about 2 tablespoons. (You could also preheat a grill pan or a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat or, preheat outdoor grill instead of the skillet).

Cook the mini burgers for 3 minutes on each side then top with cheese. Tent the mini cheeseburgers loosely with foil to help the cheese melt.

While the burgers are cooking, whisk together the mustard and vinegar in a large salad bowl. Continue whisking and stream in the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Finely chop up the remaining red onion and add it to the bowl along with the romaine, pickles and tomatoes. Toss the salad to evenly coat everything in dressing.

To serve, arrange the salad on a large platter and slide the burgers on top.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Pasta Florentine

Another pasta recipe? Yes! I love pasta! and this one is a keeper! It is easy and can easily be done on even the busiest week night!


1 pkg pasta - any chunky pasta works! (I used fiorelli by PC)
1/4 Cup Olive oil
2/3 anchovies (yes, use them! You will not be able to taste them, but they will give the sauce a depth you won't get without them)
1 tsp chili flakes (if you don't like it spicy, skip this)
1 clove crushed garlic
3 Cups baby spinach, fresh
1 pkg grape tomatoes, halved
1 can white canellini beans, drained, and rinsed
2 green onions, chopped
a few hand fulls, parmiggiano reggiano

In a large pot filled with salted boiling water, cook pasta until al dente. Drain and set aside.

In the meantime, in a saucepan, heat the olive oil. Add the anchovies. Add the chili flakes. Stir the anchovies until they are dissolved. Add the crushed garlic, the grape tomatoes, the beans, the green onions, and finally the spinach. Cook until the spinach is wilted. Stir into the pasta, and add the parmiggiano and green onions. Toss together well and serve!


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Roasted Red Pepper Pasta Sauce

Roasted red pepper is both delicious and healthy, and makes a great pasta sauce! So, try this roasted red pepper sauce at your next dinner party and let me know how much you love it!


2-3 Tblsp olive oil
1 large onion
2 garlic cloves, pressed
Red peppers - 2 large or 3 small
1 can of diced tomatoes
Fresh Basil
1 box  or bag of your favourite pasta

If you have a gas stove, char the peppers by placing them on the open flame and turning them as they "blacken", until all sides of the peppers are charred. If roasting in the oven, place the peppers on a cookie sheet, in a hot oven (400-425 degrees F), and turn as they char, until all sides are charred. Place the peppers in a bowl, and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside.

Fill a large pot with water for the pasta and bring to a rolling boil. Salt the water generously, and boil the pasta until al dente.

In the mean time, heat up a sauce pan, and add the olive oil. Chop the onion and add it to the oil and stir  until the onion is translucent. While the onion is cooking, take the plastic wrap off the bowl with the peppers, and gently peel the skin off the peppers. Place the peppers in a food processor, or blender and set by the sauce pan with the onion in it. Add garlic to the onion, and as soon as it becomes fragrant, add the red pepper puree, and the can of tomatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste, and let simmer for 15-20 minutes. Once the pasta is cooked add it to the sauce and toss gently. Chop up or tare the basil on top. Grate some parmesan cheese on top if desired.

Serve with a side salad, and crusty bread.

Feedback is welcome!